Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Study of Nurses Shows Benefit of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction

The results of a research project that included a group of nurses suggests that implementing a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program could help reduce employee stress and burnout, Medical Xpress reports.

MBSR was first developed in 1979 to teach patients with chronic medical conditions how to lead fuller and healthier lives, according to the researchers. Mindfulness is defined in the research as “a self-directed practice for relaxing the body and calming the mind through focusing on present-moment awareness.”

The MBSR study, led by Dawn Bazarko, senior vice president of the Center for Nursing Advancement at UnitedHealth Group, included 41 female nurses who participated in an eight week scheduled course of guided instruction in mindfulness meditation practices, facilitated group discussion, stretching and yoga, work and home assignments, and individually tailored instruction and support, according to Medical Xpress

Researchers surveyed the nurses’ overall health and well-being at three intervals: prior to beginning the program, immediately following the program, and four months after the program was complete. They found statistical improvement in overall health and wellness of the nurses at each of these markers.

While the study was conducted with nurses, it was intended to show that MBSR is a universal practice and can be utilized by a variety of clinical and non-clinical professions. The findings were published in the Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health.

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